Over the last couple of weeks, the coastal waters have turned hot and the summer fishing has turned on. Every summer, the fish go into what I call the hot weather patterns. Real shallow and active during the early morning hours has been the pattern over the last 10 days. The best fishing news has been the abundance of flounder and black drum, and the hundreds of small redfish.
Last week was one of the best weeks of flounder catching that I have ever had. In seven trips, we caught 82 legal-size flounder. Almost all of the flounder were caught in less than two-feet of water. Most of my flounder were caught on live shrimp. But a green spinner bait with a gulp swimming mullet on the hook caught 30 flounder for me. Fish the spinner bait real slow right on the bottom, where it is leaving a mud trail in the water. I also caught redfish and trout on the spinner bait rig.
A good number of black drum from 12 to 25 inches seem to be all over the Ogeechee River and Ossabaw sound area. I have been catching anywhere from two to 10 every day recently. The Bradley River area seems to be holding a lot of drum. The drum have been caught shallow and in some deeper holes.
The biggest news is the crop of redfish that is all over everywhere. They have actually been a real nuisance, trying to get a piece of bait past them. I have removed the barbs off all my hooks so I can release all the small redfish unharmed. In several recent trips, we have caught well over 100 small redfish. I caught one small redfish that was finally a 14-inch legal fish Sunday. We have been catching a few legal redfish in the 20- to 23-inch size. I tagged and released five over 28 inches last week. A lot of big redfish have been up in the marsh grass in the early morning. Watch for the splashing up in the grass, throw a shrimp to it and be patient.
The trout bite has slowed a little, but they are still there. We caught a couple real good ones Monday morning. During July, we usually catch a good number of trout early fishing top water plugs. Most of the top water trout are big trout. Fishing with bait, we usually catch a lot of smaller trout through July.
A good number of triple tail are being caught around the channel markers and sight fishing on the beaches. A few tarpon have been caught with most of the action being south of St. Catherine’s Island.
Overall, the fishing should be good the next few weeks with only a couple of days of tides around 8 and one half-feet coming up. During the summer, just go throw a shrimp and catch a mixed bag of flounder, drum, redfish and no telling what else.
I have been seeing some manatees in the Ossabaw Sound area. Slow down if you see some large swirls so you don’t cut one in half.
Capt. David Newlin fishes out of Fort McAllister Marina. He can be reached at 756-4573. For more information, go to www.captaindn.com.